How to Stencil on Fabric

KEY TIP: Use a Piece of Cardboard

  • Spray a piece of cardboard with Spray Adhesive and lay the fabric flat onto, this will help create a still, even stenciling surface. When stenciling bags, it sometimes is useful to weight the ends of the bag down with rocks, or a paperweight.

Clean First: make sure that you have cleaned the surface you will stencil, this is especially important when stenciling fabric that you might later wash. If you are stenciling a bag, t'shirt, blanket, ect. be sure to wash and dry the item before stenciling. Sometimes it also helps to run a lint roller over the fabric before applying the stencil.

  • Iron If Needed: If the fabric is very creased, consider ironing first. Smooth surfaces are best for stenciling. You can iron on any clothing, bags, and some curtains you plan to stencil. (If there are wrinkles you can't iron, considering steaming).
  • Or when stenciling fabric lampshadespillows or upholstery gently wipe a damp cloth over the fabric to remove any dust that might be on the surface.

For Paint: mix acrylic paint with fabric paint medium 2:1 ratio (2 parts acrylic to 1 part fabric). 

Stencil: stencil using the dry brush technique and apply swirl on the fabric in very thin layers. Fabric tends to require more layers of paint than hard surfaces, but keep those layers thin. 

Have Fun Stenciling! 

P.S. sometimes the paint needs to dry between layers. If you notice your brush is removing paint rather than adding it, take a few minutes to rest and let the paint dry, then go back to stenciling.